Review – Clio Bellenis – Transferred Stigma: Psychiatric Drugs, Prejudice and the Placebo Response.

Clio Bellenis

Clio Bellenis


I wasn’t sure what to expect from Dr. Bellenis’ talk. Something about the talk’s title, ‘Psychiatric Drugs, Prejudice and the Placebo Response’ suggested it wasn’t going to be the usual debunking of ‘x, y and z’ that I [guiltily] enjoy so much. And actually, very pleasantly, it wasn’t.

Dr. Clio Bellenis – a practicing psychiatrist- gave a…shall we say, passionate talk about the perceptions held of a much over-looked aspect of metal illness, and that is the, ‘Transferred Stigma’ (to quote Dr. Clio) surrounding both psychiatry and the drugs it prescribes.

We were treated to an hour of ‘mythbusting’ (trademarked???) about the preconceptions, misconceptions and unjustified anger directed at the practice of psychiatry.

More than happy to answer any question or clarify any point from her talk, Dr. Clio surely left everyone attending, with a more enriched view about the critical -albeit sometimes pragmatic- approach and hard work psychiatrists devote to their field.

David Hastings


Clio kindly provided the references for her talk.

Geddes JR, Carney SM, Davies C, Furukawa TA, Kupfer DJ, Frank E, Goodwin GM (2003) Relapse prevention with antidepressant drug treatment in depressive disorders: a systematic review. Lancet. 361:653-61.

Leucht S, Hierl S, Kissling W, Dold M, Davis JM. (2012) Putting the efficacy of psychiatric and general medicine medication into perspective: review of meta-analyses. Br J Psychiatry. 2012 200:97-106.

Wechsler ME, Kelley JM, Boyd IOE, et al. (2011) Active albuterol or placebo, sham acupuncture, or no intervention in asthma. N ENGL J MED 2011;365:119-126

Agomelatine, the first melatonergic antidepressant: discovery, characterization and development Christian de Bodinat, Béatrice Guardiola-Lemaitre, Elisabeth Mocaër, Pierre Renard, Carmen Muñoz & Mark J. Millan Nature Reviews Drug Discovery 9, 628-642 (August 2010)

Tom C Russ, T., C., Hamer, M., Kivimäki, M. and Batty G.D. (2012) Association between psychological distress and mortality: individual participant pooled analysis of 10 prospective cohort studies BMJ 345: 4933 pub online 31.7.12

Clio Bellenis at the Banshee Labyrinth

Clio Bellenis at the Banshee Labyrinth